On the 26th of May, our daughter Florence Emmeline was born at North Manchester General.
It was a beautiful labour, starting on the Friday night going away, coming back again and finally we went into hospital on the Monday (after going in Sunday night and home again as things weren’t happening). Kate didn’t quite get the midwife led unit she wanted but was able to have a lovely room in the labour ward instead which was for all intents and purposes exactly the same (except the ‘equipment’ was less well hidden).
We got in around 11 o’clock and Florence was born at 1.28pm in the pool.
Kate’s labour was so different to her first with George, she wasn’t being monitored, she wasn’t on ‘the drip’ and needed no pain relief. She didn’t even use gas & air, just breathing techniques and a strong grip on my hand with some massage before she got into the pool.
Kate said that the pool really helped her and I think she would recommend it to anyone.
Florence had a great start and did much better with feeding in the first weeks than George did. But about a week in we found that she was still losing weight so we needed to start ‘topping her up’. So the routine of pumping and sterilising began after a quick trip to Mothercare to get some essential replacement valves for the breast pump. We were topping her up 1 Fl Oz every 3 hours. The suspect also that she has a slight tongue tie, but we weren’t convinced that was a major contributor to the problem, it was more just that we make kids that don’t put on weight to start with – at the next weigh in she was expected to put on between 40-80g, she put on 140g.
Due to the top ups routine I took a third week off of work, having only planned the two ‘statutory’ weeks and leaving a bit of leave in reserve. But it was obvious Kate or I weren’t ready for me to return. I write this 4 days into my first week back. It’s been a stretch I think – another child certainly makes time management even more difficult – but I think things are going well. We are still figuring out how to juggle a toddler and a newborn, getting the evening routine done without issue is going to take some more practice. George seems to want only Mummy as he falls asleep at the moment which is frustrating as Kate is tied up with other things. George has only let me put him to sleep a handful of times since Christmas and I’m left feeling like I’m not doing enough otherwise or something wrong. It’s just getting the ‘handoff’ timed right so that’s Florence is settled and George hasn’t gotten too worked up.
We’ve managed a trip out to the Zoo which was a lovely day and this week we went out for my birthday to Bowl. Both times were really fun.